Jo Ferraro, Ferraro Real Estate Team
IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Jo Ferraro, president, Ferraro Real Estate Team.
What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?
In this hot real estate market, many transactions require a short time frame for offer deadlines and skillful negotiations, so work-life balance can oftentimes be a challenge. However, being part of our team is a great benefit that helps our agents and clients in this area. The most rewarding part of my job is being in a position to help people! It’s an honor to be a trusted advisor and negotiator for our clients, and in the position to put their needs and goals as our top priority. My personal commitment is to always lead with integrity and with value in everything we do.
Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?
I really admire Barbara Corcoran. You might know her from the show Shark Tank, but her success came long before that show. I love her story in that she started with nothing and now is a successful businesswoman, investor, speaker, and consultant with amazing insight. While her attitude is extremely determined, Barbara also has a really great heart. Some advice she’s given me is to go for what you want, fail forward, and have a passion for what you do!
What has been the high point of your career so far?
Right now! I recently made a huge decision to leave a company I was a partner in and worked with for 20 years so that I can provide more value and opportunity to our clients, agents, and staff. I’m excited to expand our value, service, market share, and provide state-of-the-art technology along with new marketing platforms.
Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give to your 21-year old self?
Persist without exception, lead with value, fail forward, be grateful, and always stay humble. I tell my five children and every agent I mentor this: believe in yourself — surround yourself with other positive, can-do people who will encourage you and grow your confidence. Don’t be afraid to think big and go after your dreams. Be creative, honest, work hard, and take time to step back from time to time to see the big picture and enjoy the journey along the way.
What would you say are the best things about living and working in Dane County?
It’s difficult to choose just one since there are so many. My family enjoys the many lakes throughout Dane County and south-central Wisconsin, and have so many memories from time spent together on them. We also enjoy hiking, finding fresh food at the Dane County Farmers Market, and making our way to the many great community events that make living here really special.
Do you have any secret talents or abilities that people would be surprised to discover?
I can wiggle my ears! Outside of that, I’m a great gourmet cook and I like to write. My oldest daughter, who is going into the Peace Corps soon, and I are planning to write a book together. I also enjoy fishing, drawing, and being silly with my kids.
What are your guilty pleasures?
Chocolate and cookies dipped in coffee! When I fly, I always choose the airplane cookies and a cup of coffee. I dip and sip while enjoying the flight and a good book!
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